NBA Free Agents 2011: 1 Player Each Team Should Avoid
When a team is searching the market, they shouldn't go with the "best guy available" mentality.
For one, how the player will mesh with his team has to be considered. Does the player need the ball in his hands in order to contribute? That doesn't work so well when the team's philosophy is predicated on ball sharing.
What about players who shoot 20 to 30 times a game? Don't bring them on to a squad that already has a set rotation and stars that put up most of the points.
Also, when adding or re-signing role players, there has to be a balance between how much they can contribute with what a new contract means for the future of the franchise.
We are going to look at each team and the guys they shouldn't think about picking up. Most of these guys played with the team the season before, while a few are looking hard to find a new home.
Player: Jamal Crawford
After two seasons with the team, it's time the Atlanta Hawks part ways with Jamal Crawford.
That's not to say that Crawford hasn't made his contributions. He is known for not having a conscious and taking the big shot when the game is on the line, but the team has Joe Johnson to fill that need
Crawford shot .421 percent from the field and .341 percent from beyond the arc during the regular season, but he performed much worse in the postseason (.394 field goal percentage).
Instead of giving Crawford a large contract, the Hawks should look elsewhere for contributions at shooting guard.
Player: Sasha Pavlovic
With the addition of Jeff Green to the team, Sasha Pavlovic's nearly 10 minutes a game are doing more to impede Green's development than making the team better.
Pavlovic posted a solid shooting percentage when he saw the floor (which has been a problem with him the last few years), although he averaged just 1.7 points per game.
Pavlovic's ability to play the guard or forward spot adds depth to the team, but he shouldn't be with the Celtics for the 2011-12 season.
Player: Dominic McGuire
Dominic McGuire's one season with the Charlotte Bobcats wasn't very impressive. In his 14.6 minutes per game with the team, he shot just .396 percent from the field.
Unless the lockout gives McGuire time to develop a jump shot, he shouldn't be re-signed by the Bobcats.
Player: Kurt Thomas
Kurt Thomas actually came in last year and gave the Bulls solid minutes when he was called upon, especially in the playoffs. But as the oldest active player in the league, the longtime veteran is way past his prime.
With the Bulls looking to make a trip back to the Eastern Conference finals and beyond, it's time to find another backup.
Player: DeShawn Stevenson
With the depth at the point guard position, the Cavaliers will be looking for someone at the shooting guard.
DeShawn Stevenson could look attractive to the very young team. He's been in the league since 2000, and now has the experience of being on a championship team, but Stevenson can't quite get to the rack like he used to.
If the Cavaliers want to pick up Stevenson for his experience, let them take risk, but there is nothing wrong with a young, athletic roster that is built for the future.
Player: Peja Stojakovic
Peja just didn't look like the quality player he once was for the Dallas Mavericks during playoffs. He couldn't knock down open threes, and he was consistently overmatched when trying to guard Chris Bosh.
Stojakovic's regular season was decent for the Mavericks, and if he can get his shooting back on track he might be worth a look, but until then, he is too big of a liability.
Player: J.R. Smith
J.R. Smith is one of the most talented shooting guards in the NBA. He has unlimited range, he can jump out of the gym and when motivated, he can play good perimeter defense.
With that said, no player has driven George Karl up the wall more than Smith in his tenure with the Nuggets. Smith takes bad shots and has a propensity for not listening to the coach.
It seems like the Nuggets have chosen Arron Afflalo as the shooting guard of the future for the team, and they will let Smith find a new coach to upset.
Player: Tracy McGrady
At one time, Tracy McGrady was unanimously considered one of the best players in the NBA.
McGrady shot .443 percent from the field and a dismal .341 from behind the three-point line in 23.4 minutes per contest for the Pistons.
While McGrady might still have something left in the tank to give to a contender, his efforts last year just weren't enough for Motown to ask him back.
Golden State Warriors
Player: Vladimir Radmanovic
Vladimir Radmanovic didn't put up incredible numbers for the Warriors last season, but he didn't put up horrible numbers either.
The only problem with re-signing Radmanovic is that the Warriors picked up a dymanic young guard-forward hybrid in the draft, Klay Thompson.
Radmanovic will provide a team with a deep-shooting threat, but with Thompson now on the team, there is no room for Radmonovic's return.
Player: Erick Dampier
The Houston Rockets' options at center are still somewhat limited. They did draft Lithuanian Donatas Motiejūnas and are developing Hasheem Thabeet, but I see the team making a move for some experience at the position to help bring along the younger guys.
Bringing in Dampier would be a mistake.
He could certainly play a mentoring role and provide size, but getting the young guys a ton of minutes early would help speed up the their development, and you can't really beat the mentor they already have in new head coach Kevin McHale.
Also, Dampier isn't quite the presence he used to be anyways.
Player: Jeff Foster
This might be a shock to some Pacers fans considering Jeff Foster has been on the team since being drafted in 1999, but he shouldn't be re-signed by the Pacers.
Foster provides the team with unmatched effort. Even after he had back surgery in 2010, Foster still hits the floor for lose balls and fights for every rebound. But Foster's lack of offense makes the big man too one-dimensional.
The team needs to move on.
Los Angeles Clippers
Player: Brian Cook
If Brian Cook looks like a better option on offense than Craig Smith because of his quick release and three-point shot, then you must not have watched many Clippers games.
Even without a perimeter game to spread the floor, the Clippers should re-sign Smith and let Cook find his way somewhere else.
Los Angeles Lakers
Player: Theo Ratliff
Even at the age of 38, Theo Ratliff is still in great shape, and while he used to be one of the NBA's premier defensive players, he isn't anymore.
If the Lakers want to make another run at a title, they will look for someone else to provide minutes as a backup center.
Player: Brian Scalabrine
The Memphis Grizzles have a deep roster at nearly every position, and with Rudy Gay back, expect the team to have an even better season than they did last year.
Just because Scalabrine finds his way on teams that make it far into the playoffs, don't sign the guy for no reason like every other team seems to do.
Player: Jamaal Magloire
I would agree that the Heat need some depth at center, I just don't see re-signing Jamaal Magloire, or Erick Dampier for that matter, as the answer.
The Heat should try to bring in an offensive threat at center so they don't have to depend on the Big Three for all of their scoring.
Player: Chris Douglas-Roberts
Many have said the Bucks should let Michael Redd leave town, I'm not part of that crowd.
But the Bucks already have a few small forwards on the roster and they should focus on re-signing Luc Richard Mbah a Moute instead.
Players: Sebastian Telfair
I have always thought Sebastian Telfair has potential, even after he was considered by many to be a bust.
But the Timberwolves don't need to re-sign Telfair.
Ricky Rubio will be with the team for the upcoming season, and Luke Ridnour has proven to be a valuable leader at the point.
New Jersey Nets
Players: Dan Gadzuric
The New Jersey Nets have a good young center in Brook Lopez, but with Dan Gadzuric's age and lack of skill on offense, the drop off when Lopez leaves the game is dramatic.
And If the Nets are fine with Lopez' backup having no offense, they already have Johan Petro for that position.
New Orleans Hornets
Players: D.J. Mbenga
D.J. Mbenga is an athletic, high-energy player. We all know he isn't brought into games for his offensive potency, and the New Orleans Hornets have other free agents to worry about.
Between the abundance of seven-footers on the team, Aaron Gray, Jason Smith and Mbenga, Mbenga will likely be the odd man out.
New York Knicks
Players: Jared Jeffries
In his second stint with the Knicks, Jeffries performed much worse than he did in his first (and fans weren't too fond of him before).
Jeffries shot .380 percent from the field and .330 from three while scoring only two points per game.
Jeffries length can be a bonus when he is playing well, but the Knicks shouldn't even contemplate re-signing him.
Oklahoma City Thunder
Players: Michael Redd
While this might appear like a nice addition on the surface, the Thunder don't need to bring in another shooter.
The more players that are brought in to score, the less shots go to Kevin Durant. If the Thunder bring in anyone, they should choose someone with a defense-first philosophy.
Players: Malik Allen
When getting on the floor for the Magic, Malik Allen didn't perform very well. He shot just .335 percent in almost 10 minutes per game.
Not that his re-signing would make or break the team, but at this point in his career, Allen is more like a 13th man.
Players: Jason Kapono
Jason Kapono barely got on the floor for the 76ers last season, and when he did, he didn't play well.
If a team brings in a guy to make buckets and he is shooting .250 percent from the field, with half that from three (although he didn't even average one shot per game), he shouldn't be invited back.
The 76ers and fans alike know Kapono will be somewhere else next season.
Players: Mike Bibby
The Suns will probably end up re-signing Aaron Brooks to a new contract, although he didn't perform up to expectations last season. But they might also bring in a veteran point guard as a safety to an aging Steve Nash.
A roster with Nash, Grant Hill and Vince Carter in the starting lineup doesn't need any more experience on the roster.
The Suns should look to get younger for the 2011-12 season.
Players: Patrick Mills
In 12.2 minutes per game, Patrick Mills scored 5.5 points and shot .413 percent from the field.
If the Trailblazers hadn't drafted Duke's Nolan Smith with their first-round pick, Mills might have had a chance of re-signing with the team, but Smith needs to get all the minutes he can get for the Blazers in the upcoming season.
Players: Any Guards.
After the Kings re-sign Marcus Thornton, they will begin trying to find enough room so that their guards can all contribute.
With Thornton, Maurice Evans, Francisco Garcia, and rookies Jimmer Fredette and Isaiah Thomas, the Sacramento Kings backcourt will be pretty crowded. But as long as they stay away from signing any new faces, the Kings will make it work.
Players: Reggie Evans
Reggie Evans isn't an offensive powerhouse at 6'8", but his knack for rebounding and intense effort usually earns his respect from fans for whatever team he is on.
The Raptors are deep at power forward, and re-signing Evans wouldn't be wise.
San Antonio Spurs
Players: Samuel Dalembert
The San Antonio Spurs certainly don't have too much height on the roster, but if they make a move for Samuel Dalembert (who sits at 6'11"), they would be making the wrong one.
Under Gregg Popovich, the Spurs defense will never be a problem, and with Tim Duncan and Tiago Splitter on the roster, they have enough height.
The Spurs should make a move for J.R. Smith instead, as they could use a little more firepower. Popovich is one of the only coaches in the NBA that could get what most people expect of Smith out of him.
Players: Ronnie Price
Ronnie Price just didn't do enough last season to earn a roster spot. The Jazz need to re-sign a point guard, but Earl Watson deserves the slight edge.
Last season, Price shot .353 percent from the field and .290 percent from range. He has never been a high-percentage shooter, but as a point guard (or for any position really), that is just not acceptable.
Players: Josh Howard
After his return from a knee injury, Josh Howard still hasn't returned to form, and the drafting of Chris Singleton puts a damper on Howard's future with the Wizards.
Last season, Howard shot .348 percent from the field and .241 percent from three. If the Wizards do re-sign a forward (or guard/forward), Maurice Evans is probably the better option.